Ryan was diagnosed with Lymphoma earlier this year after becoming ill towards the end of 2021. He has now thankfully been given the all clear and he even made his comeback for the club last week after 12 months out.
The volunteers and all involved in the club have supported Ryan and his family through fundraising and generally helping them through the past year.
Sarah Bennett had been nominated by St Albans because she is ‘an absolute god send to our club’. She’s first to put her hand up to help at club events and really goes above and beyond her roles as U15 team manager and first aider. She even cooks the players a good meal after training every week.
The previous Saturday, Paul Davies of Llanelli Wanderers and Leon Welsby of Pyle led Wales and Georgia out respectively.
Paul is Wanderers’ mini and junior chair and U12 coach. His nomination paid tribute to Paul ‘working tirelessly to run the junior section’ and credited him for reviving the junior section which now boasts eight age groups, each with 30 plus players and a strong U15 section.
Paul arranges fixtures for all age groups and coach education and can often be found at the club cleaning changing rooms, working the bar, marking pitches and all of the other behind the scenes work that helps ensure the club is a happy and thriving environment.
Leon Welsby is another volunteer truly going the extra mile to ensure the club is a real hub of the community. He organises mental health fitness classes, inclusive activities, fitness and learning camps in the school holidays, pride events and he’s generally ensuring all feel welcome at the club.
Tyrone Davies of Fleur De Lys and Liam McKay carried the flags for Wales and New Zealand to kick off the series while Tony Parry of Bala and Carl Thompson of Birchgrove were chosen for Argentina – all worthy recipients of the honour.
Angharad Collins, WRU Head of Places said, “We are very aware that Welsh rugby’s strength is in the thousands of volunteers the length and breadth of the country that ensure pitches are marked, fixtures organised, food prepared and grant applications submitted.
“We want to recognise and reward these volunteers and inviting some standout individuals from the community game to be flagbearers this autumn has been very successful. “We will continue to support our volunteers across all disciplines with a range of additional initiatives in the very near future.”